これからの時代はコーパスを使う時代でしょう。約一億語のイギリス英語のコーパスがあります。Search the British National Corpus online から調べたい語を入れて検索すると、コンピュータがランダムに選んだ50の用例が現れます。これはとても便利です。
例えば、先日、as if I am …の用法の妥当性について色々と語りましたが、この用法は正用法ではないにしても、多くの用法が現れます。試しに as if I am と語句を入れて検索をしてみましょう。すると19例が見つかります。(ところが、as if I was…, as if I were … で検索するとストップしてしまいます。これはなぜか、用例数が多いとsearch がうまく機能しないのか）
Only 19 solutions found for this query
I do not feel as if I am well; I’ve got no energy, I’m always cold, my fingers and toes are a weird shade of blue, and I know I spend a huge amount of time thinking about food.
‘I can’t say I feel much as if I am,’ he added.
I look at a garden before me as if I am a camera that can throw reality out of focus and can twist and contort and blur.
Does it sound as if I am striving to avoid saying that the music is boring?
Neighbours and friends tell me that when I am racing you can hear the noise right down the street; it is as if I am running in Dad’s front room!
‘It looks’, said the judge who was plainly captivated by the actress, ‘as if I am the only one who would like to see Miss Collier again.’
Then why do I always feel as if I am falling off the edge of a cliff?
‘Do I look as if I am jesting?’
I feel as if I am poised somewhere on the edge of a slope, and about to slide down when I am supposed to be climbing up.
But Calatin’s banqueting hall and the house in the forest had wavered and grown dim —‘as if I am seeing it through water,’ thought Fergus — and there had been a great heaviness within him so that it was difficult to breathe.
Only we’ll have to make it look as if I am.
‘But must he look at me as if I am the murderer?’
How dare you lay claim to me, as if I am yours for the taking?’
He looks at me as if I am crazy, and watches a grateful cat dragging the carcass to a safe distance with disapproval.
I will not say that much of this debate has been irrelevant, because that sounds as if I am dismissing what has been said, which I am not, but it is irrelevant in the context of 1993, because the advent of the new system will answer many of the problems that have been identified.
‘Do I look as if I am joking, Miss Bishop?’
When I think of getting married and all that means I get this feeling as if I am being physically choked.
I feel as if I am watching something happen to someone else.’
I mean I know that now because I never thought I’d be on the scrap heap, but sometimes I really do feel as if I am